St. Francis Winery & Vineyards Offsets 40% Electricity Needs with SunPower

We’ve found that solar is an affordable and practical way for us to reduce our electricity costs and to stabilize our region’s power supply. We hope other businesses will follow our lead to preserve the environmental quality of Sonoma—now and for generations to come.”

– Christopher W. Silva, President and CEO, St. Francis Winery & Vineyards, California

St. Francis Winery & Vineyards, a premier producer of high-end wines since 1971, maintains a flawless reputation as one of the nation’s most environmentally-responsible winemakers. As part of its commitment to protecting the environmental integrity and natural beauty of Sonoma County, in 2004 St. Francis decided to harness the power of the sun to generate electricity. The company chose to install a SunPower solar electric system on its unused winery and barrel house rooftops to generate clean, renewable power.

Recognition of SunPower's Value

St. Francis Winery sought a solar solution that was not only practical and affordable, but could also be customized to fit the company’s needs. When SunPower approached St. Francis Winery with a package that offered on-site power generation and customized lighting upgrades to maximize energy efficiency for storage and wine making, St. Francis Winery quickly recognized the advantages of this proposal.

Exceeding Expectations

In May 2004, SunPower completed the installation of a 457 kW solar electric system atop St. Francis’ metal roofs, alongside custom-designed,energy-efficient lighting upgrades at the refrigerated barrel storage and wine making operations facility. These combined efforts resulted in a 40% reduction in overall energy consumption and a 48% reduction in the company’s lighting-based electricity consumption. In addition, the new lighting generates less heat and helps to maintain a lower, more optimal temperature for wine storage.

Less Electricity Consumed

By reducing 40% of its peak energy load, St Francis Winery also reduces utility peak power demand, while strengthening its reputation as an environmentally-responsible organization. Over the next 30 years,the winery’s on-site solar power generation will reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 4,580 tons. This is equivalent to planting over 1,300 acres of trees, powering 450 homes, or not driving over 11 million miles on our roads.

Project Overview

Location:    Santa Rosa, California
Completed:    May 2004
Installation Type:    Commercial Roof
System Size:    457 kW
Covered Roof Area:    80,000 square feet
Number of Panels:    2,524
Products and Services:    SunPower® solar electric system

  • Reduces annual energy usage by 40%
  • Operates at over 110% of expected solar performance
  • Will reduce CO2 emissions by 4,580 tons over the next 30 years
  • Emissions reduction is equivalent to not driving over 11 million miles